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body wood

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by steve-o, Jun 17, 2003.


  1. steve-o

    steve-o Guest

    Apr 17, 2002
    is there another name for white wood?
    i was looking at hard woods at home depot...just looking...and i saw a couple of nice looking pieces of white wood.. is this a ok wood for a body?

    how is pine? a nice piece of pine that is...
    red oak? that an allright core wood?

    thanks
    steve
     
  2. Bass Kahuna

    Bass Kahuna

    Dec 3, 2002
    West Lafayette, Indiana
    Luthier, Custom Builder
    Not sure what they mean by "white wood". I'll check my local store and see if they have it and what it is. I suspect it is some form of clear pine.

    Pine, overall, is way to soft for an instrument wood. I couldn't see it in any form in a neck, laminated or otherwise, I could possibly see it as a body core of some type between a hardwood back and front lamination, but still.... Didn't the original Parker Fly use some form of Pine in it along with some type of expoy reinforcment or "exoskeleton"? I'm not completely up on the Parker Fly guitars.....

    Generally, oak is not used in guitars and/or basses mostly due to it's weight. It is a heavy hardwood. Peavey made some guitars and basses out of Oak years ago (I believe the model was the T-40?), but they were never all that popular, and they are heavy!

    Lastly, the woods for sale in places like Home Depot might not have the proper moisture level for instruments, I'd check them over with a moisture reader, and also they might not be done "working", ie: the wood might move, twist, warp, etc. more than would be desired for an instrument. If you're considering even the hardwoods from someplace like Home Depot, I'd let them cure for a few years first. I'm sure that someone will jump in here and mention an instrument they've built with Home Depot wood, but not my cup of tea (a recent issue of the magazine from the Guild of American Luthiers even had an article about a guy who made an acoustic guitar completely out of toothpicks and expoy - seriously!)

    Just my $0.02....

    :^)~
     
  3. Suburban

    Suburban

    Jan 15, 2001
    lower mid Sweden
    Is white wood a species? If just a color, it will be for a lot of woods, whereof maple and birch could be very suitable for necks.

    Pine...a very old piece of very slowgrown pine would do quite well both for neck and body. What you find in HomeDepot won't do.

    Oak is similar to maple for neck use, but has a reputation of "tinny" sound when used for body.

    And...it must be veery dry, less than 5% moisture!
     
  4. steve-o

    steve-o Guest

    Apr 17, 2002
    well i went with poplar as the core..
    and i bid on some flamed maple for a back and top wood....

    steve
     
  5. "the woods for sale in places like Home Depot might not have the proper moisture level for instruments, I'd check them over with a moisture reader, and also they might not be done "working", ie: the wood might move, twist, warp, etc. more than would be desired for an instrument."
    Bas Kahuna has a good point here. I bought some red oak from Home Depot to "practice" with some of my tools on. It was actually too dry. If you want instrument quality wood you should check out some of the dealers that specialize in woods used for this purpose. You don't want the wood too green or too dry.